UAE superyacht builder Gulf Craft says Maldives offers rich rewards

UAE superyacht builder Gulf Craft says Maldives offers rich rewards

The UAE luxury boat builder Gulf Craft said today the Maldives offers a major opportunity for the superyacht sector.

And the chief executive of the creator of such dreamboats as the 155-foot Majesty 155 believes the market for large luxury vessels is likely to grow in the Maldives, where Gulf Craft already builds boats and provides the lion’s share of leisure cruisers.

"We see an emerging demand for bigger boats – over 45 feet in length – across the country, and we are investing in our local operations, in terms of both infrastructure and skill-set, to support this growing demand for larger and more luxurious leisure craft," said Erwin Bamps.

Maldivian tour operators are set to benefit from a growing demand from affluent millennial vacationers for luxury cruising experiences, thanks to the increased availability of domestically produced leisure craft, he said.

"The Maldives is host to a booming high-end millennial tourist demographic that is constantly looking for new and exciting ways to spend time on the islands, and offering guests the opportunity to enjoy the country’s vast seascapes from the comfort of a luxury yacht would be the perfect way to help visitors create lasting memories," said Mr Bamps.

Until now, most boats in the Maldives have been used to transport people from one part of the Indian Ocean nation to another, however, Mr Bamps said this trend is rapidly changing, with private operators looking to introduce luxury cruising to enhance the holidaymaking experience for visitors.

For example, the Maldives-based operates the 90ft Anastasia luxury cruiser for guests wishing to experience the atoll’s beauty from the sea.

And with figures from the World Travel and Tourism Council showing that travel and tourism contributes to more than half (52 per cent) of Maldives’ overall GDP, Mr Bamps said the prospect of enabling visitors to explore the exotic coastlines from the water will be of particular interest to the country’s thriving hospitality sector, as the industry continuously strives to expand its experiential offering.

Gulf Craft has been a major contributor of Maldives’ transport infrastructure, and accounts for more than 80 per cent of the country’s boats, most of which consist of the builder’s Touring passenger vessels. It has provided the Maldives with more than 1,000 boats during its 15 years of operations in the country.

In addition to its locally-based manufacturing facility, the company also operates a dedicated marine services centre, ensuring around-the-clock access to support.

Gulf Craft also recently announced a partnership with Ooredoo for the deployment of the GPS-based tracking solution, Ooredoo Locate, on all of its passenger boats. The technology enables owners to keep track of a craft’s location and status via a dedicated mobile app or Web-based portal.

Founded in the UAE in 1982, Gulf Craft offers a wide variety of premium craft, ranging from 27 ft to 155 ft in length.

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